It’s spring break, songkran festival, and political chaos.

I spent Saturday wandering intentionally through local villages in search of a cotton-weaving factory. By taxitruck and foot, I met some incredib(ly hospitable) Thais along the way. Many were wearing red shirts, and carrying buckets of water (some climbed into the truck and made sure I was sufficiently soaked before departing). Most took time to converse.

Sonkran is the Northern Thai new year. It’s three days of holiday stretched into a week of some sort of region-wide water fight. Seriously. Everyone seems to be carrying squirt guns and/or riding in the back of pickup trucks with drums of water. There is no shelter, the holiday has yet to officially begin, and the city is packed.

I returned home last night (wet, as expected), to find my host father positioned in front of the radio. After watching the news with him today (already knowing a bit of the situation, and that the ASEAN summit had been canceled), I headed over to the internet cafe (our neighbor’s garage) to do some self-informing.

Tomorrow I will join my family for three days of celebration back in their village in the Lampang Province. While the protests provide no personal threat (I’m entirely safe), the situation is quite incredible to be experiencing from within the country.

Watching as the next week unfolds, Reb.

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